Books: Susan Midalia novel tells tale of Everyday Madness
THE impetus for Susan Midalia’s latest novel Everyday Madness came from a highly unpleasant character in one of her short stories who kept nudging her to give him a second chance.
“I wanted to explore the possibility of change in middle age; what it might take for a 59-year-old man to become a better person,” the Claremont author said.
“Everything seemed to follow from that single, crucial premise. I imagined this grumpy, cynical, self-pitying man in the same way that I imagine all my characters.
“I based him on my reading, on my observations of people and on listening to their distinctive voices. I’m also inclined to be grumpy myself.”
Through interweaving the perspectives of the four main characters — a middle-aged cynic, his depressed wife, an over-anxious mother and adolescent girl — the thought-provoking book explores dysfunctional marriages, the challenges of parenting, the possibility of romance, clinical depression, the loss of youthful ideals and the necessity for hope.
Midalia said although she was unlike any of these characters, she was still able to share their perspectives by thinking about …
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